Resource title

The Coupling of product architecture and organizational structure in complex product development

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Product architecture knowledge is typically embedded in the communication patterns of established development organizations, whose resulting resistance to change poses critical challenges for firms facing architectural innovation. Yet, there is a lack of structured methods that managers can use to address this issue. This research introduces an approach to study how design interfaces in the product architecture map onto communication patterns within the development organization. Specifically, the authors study the cases when: 1) known design interfaces are not addressed by team interactions, and 2) observed team interactions are not predicted by design interfaces. They hypothesize how organizational and system boundaries, system modularity, and design interface strength impact the coupling of design interfaces and team interactions. This paper is first in using both design structure matrix representation and social network methods for statistical modeling and hypothesis testing. Their results offer important managerial insights about how to deal with interdependence across organizational and functional boundaries. In particular, they show how system modularity and strength of design interfaces moderate the effects of organizational and system boundaries. The research uses data collected describing a large commercial aircraft engine development process.

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Resource language

en

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application/pdf

Resource resource URL

http://flora.insead.edu/fichiersti_wp/inseadwp2002/2002-76.pdf

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Copyright INSEAD. All rights reserved